News World Former Melbourne school principal Malka Leifer ‘fit to be extradited to Australia’

Former Melbourne school principal Malka Leifer ‘fit to be extradited to Australia’

Malka Leifer
Malka Leifer was arrested on February 12 last year. Photo: ABC
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Two psychiatrists have told an Israeli court that former school principal Malka Leifer is fit to be extradited to Melbourne to face child sex abuse charges.

The psychiatrists appeared for the state prosecution at a closed-door extradition hearing on Friday (Thursday local time).

Leifer’s lawyer Yehuda Fried says the defence will argue Leifer is mentally unfit for extradition.

The defence is expected to present three psychiatrists, beginning next Thursday, and the hearing is expected to go until mid-year.

“It will not finish next Thursday, this will continue with other experts,” Mr Fried told AAP after the hearing.

“I think this will go on until at least May or June this year.”

Victorian police want to bring Leifer, who was arrested in Israel in February, back to Australia to face 74 charges of child sexual abuse.

The allegations are linked to her time as head of Adass Israel School’s girls’ campus in Melbourne in the 2000s.

Leifer flew to Israel but was later arrested there and last August was deemed mentally fit to face the extradition hearing.

Dassi Erlich, who has accused Leifer of abusing her, stayed up to the early hours on Friday [AEDT] for news from the latest proceedings.

“With several expert witnesses still to take the stand, we pray that the judge will come to the right decision and find Malka Leifer extraditable,” she told AAP.

Ms Erlich expressed frustration with the “seemingly endless” case.

“Yehuda Fried has promised to bring everything needed under the sun, not just his three expert witnesses, in order to delay the process,” she said.

Leifer is currently being held in Israel’s Ramla prison.

-AAP